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April 13, 2015      5:01 PM

Tea Party clashes with law enforcement in the Senate over red light cameras

Bill advances out of Transportation Committee amid classic argument over safety vs accusations of a "money grab."

A coalition of city law enforcement from around the state descended on the Capitol Monday to try to bat down an attempt by Sen. Bob Hall, R-Edgewood, to strip cities of red light cameras.

As the regular session enters its last two months, some of these populist-minded bills are surfacing on committee agendas, like Hall’s attempt to rid cities of red light cameras or strike the ability to use eminent domain to build toll roads. In the last week, Sens. Konni Burton, Lois Kolkhorst, Donna Campbell, Brandon Creighton and Charles Perry have signed onto Hall’s Senate Bill 714. But, whether Hall can get it to the floor of the Senate is unclear.

Hall, who had the assistance of Transportation Committee Chairman Sen. Robert Nichols’, R-Jacksonville, staff to draft his bill, said he wanted to end city authority to use red light cameras on three grounds: the constitutional rights of individual drivers; the public safety (or lack thereof) generated by red light cameras; and the use of revenue.

By Kimberly Reeves